After one confirmed casualty and millions without power, Monday morning saw Hurricane Ida downgrade to tropical storm status.
The last Friday of August left Ida as a Category 1 hurricane. By Sunday afternoon, she was a raging Category 4 storm with winds in excess of 150mph. Landfall came at 1 p.m. Central for the NOLA area, marking an “extremely dangerous” storm on the 16th anniversary of horrific Hurricane Katrina.
One death is known after the fallout: a 60-year-old man who died after brute-force winds pushed a tree over onto his home.
In addition, over 1 million locations are without power in Louisiana Monday morning. This leaves millions in the dark amidst flooding and continuing storm winds. Another 100,000+ are without power in neighborning Mississippi, too, PEOPLE cites.
If there is any good news to be had, it’s that the National Hurricane Center cites Ida’s retreat back to a tropical storm around 9:15 a.m. Central.
Now, monitoring and assessment of damage is to begin. Louisiana officials will provide aid to any and all who can be reached – and the search for missing people can begin.
“We are ending what was a terrifying night for many individuals waiting for their rescue,” Jefferson Parish President Cynthia Lee Sheng tells NBC News Monday. “Today is the day we are going to see the damage.”
Hurricane Ida’s Fallout to Create ‘Considerable to Life-Threatening Flash and Urban Flooding’
But the fight is far from over. NHC continues to stress the “heavy rainfall” Ida holds. She will produce immense precipitation for “portions of southeast Louisiana, coastal Mississippi, and southwestern Alabama,” the organization says.
This may prove extremely dangerous for any in Ida’s domain. “Considerable to life-threatening flash and urban flooding and significant riverine flooding impacts” are now the NHC’s gravest concern.
If we have anything else to be thankful for, it is that Ida has not become Hurricane Katrina. 16 years ago, Katrina would claim over 1,800 lives as a Category 3 storm. Damages would surpass $100 billion.
Yet Hurricane Ida is still a record-breaker for Louisiana. Sustaining winds of 150 mph means Ida is one of the most powerful storms to ever hit Louisiana. Last year, Hurricane Laura would do the same, making both the strongest hurricanes by wind force to hit the state since 1856, cites NOLA.com.
In addition to flooding, citizens need to be on the alert for possible tornadoes. Hurricane storms have a habit of producing these deadly phenomenon, as well.
“Hurricanes and tropical storms that make landfall in the Gulf of Mexico are more likely to produce tornadoes compared to storms in the Atlantic,” explains CNN meteorologist Brandon Miller.
Please be safe out there, fellow Outsiders.